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UN: The organisational decline and how India can rebuild it

Shubham Sharma

Yesterday, PM Narendra Modi delivers a memorable speech at the UNGA session. The remarkable note included the earliest needs of introducing reforms in the outdated charter of 20th century of the organisation. In the series, PM urged the United Nations, to adopt the new structure of membership and decision making. This particularly includes India's permanent seat in the UN.

Why is the global organisation a problem?

India has always been the flag bearer of equal rights and opportunities. That's why the country has the biggest constitution in the world. Unfortunately, the global guide of equality -UN still follows a dominance-based rule. From the selection of a non-permanent member to the elections of Secretary-General, the powers are confined within a few buttons of authority.


The current strata of the United Nations revolve around 5 nations. These are USA, China, UK, France and Russia. Other than these, there are 10 non-permanent members elected for a time period of 2 years in UNSC. At the time of formation in 1944 with 51 countries, global leaders like Kofi Annan, Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King felt the need of making some global powers accountable and responsible for leading the other countries. These regulations were framed and made a part of Chapter 18 of the UN charter. However, the key decision-making powers of these non-permanent members are confined to a certain limit. On the other hand, these 5 members can bring a proposal and can even ratify it.

This can be done even if other 188 members of the assembly disagree with the plan. Whereas other countries, including 10 non-permanent members cannot resolute a single law even if one of these 5 countries object. This is usually done by their special Veto Power. 10 of the non-permanent members hold a collective veto, which works when 7 out of 10 members supports the group. Thus, it is a concern of great shame that a reputed global organisation with 193 members behaves like a puppet within these 5 fingers, serving their personal needs.

Why India must be given a permanent seat?

India, being the largest democracy in the world holds 18% of the world population.

India has the 2nd largest army in the world, serves the UN with 44 out of 65 peacekeeping missions.

The country is the 3rd largest fund provider from Asia to the UN.

India stands 3rd in purchasing power parity across the world.

India has always followed the UN's policies. Be it implementation of Nuclear Weapons' Non-Proliferation Treaty, or ratification of 17 SDGs.

India is part of major decision making groups. This includes G4, G7, Quad, SCO, BRICS and many more.

India has been elected as a non-permanent member of UN 7 times(including current session 2020-22). For this, India is backed by 55 nations of Asia - Pacific region. Out of 193 members, India received an overwhelming majority with 186 votes this time in UNSC.

India is a county with non-expanding intentions of geographical boundaries. Indians are always satisfied within the territory they have got to live in.

Despite having neighbours Pakistan and China, India still believes and acts by defence first policy.

If India becomes a permanent member, a global resolution on terrorism can be achieved. This is because India is the most affected country with infiltrations from neighbouring countries. A proposal of CCIT(Convention on International Terrorism) was put forward a few months ago. But China used its veto and prevented the proposal to take the form of a resolution. China had earlier attempted and misused its powers in a similar way in the case of Masood Ajhar.

Most importantly, it is evident that the UN is an outcome of the 2nd World War. Currently, the world is undergoing a silent, but the most destructive world war in the form of Coronavirus. It is sure that India will prove to be a major stakeholder in this battle. So, one of the biggest interest group must be respected and legally provided a permanent seat.

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Heading towards a new UN

Time has changed. So, the UN must follow the principle of change and should review its charter. The days of a single dominating leadership are no more. However, the basic principles of the organisation must remain intact. In the transformation, the 5 permanent members must support the organisational revolution. This is what leaders like Kofi Annan and Martin Luther King dreamt of, the real UNITED NATIONS.

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